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Rolling stone Wesley Crocker seems a harmless enough free spirit when Posadas County Undersheriff Bill Gastner offers him a lift on the road and spots him a free dinner. Crocker beds down for the night with his gear on the high-school athletic field. By morning, 13 year-old Maria Ibarra is found dead under the high-school football bleachers a few feet away and Crocker goes straight to jail. His account of how he passed the night is full of enough holes to keep him locked down, but meanwhile a background check on Maria raises troubling questions about her life.... Compare to Michael McGarrity's Tularosa (Norton 0-393-03922-6 04/96 and mass market 0-671-00252-X) and The Judas Judge (Dutton 0-525-94547-4 06/00). Privileged to Kill is the fifth Undersherrif Bill Gastner mystery following Poisoned Pen Press' releases of Heartshot, Bitter Recoil, Twice Buried, and Before She Dies. Recent publications from St. Martin's Press include Out of Season (0-312-24424-2 10/99) and Dead Weight (0-312-25203-X 10/00).

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